24 June 2013

by jkatejohnston

Dear Max,

I finished a carton of 18 eggs packed in styrofoam.  “Wait, save it! Mom!” Enzo pulled it out of the recycling.

“Okay.”

“I have to break it.”

He had me hold it up in front of him, while he stood staring at it, balanced and menacing. Then—pow!—he broke it with a punch. The stiff styrofoam made a gratifying crack. We did this about five times as the fragment of styrofoam got smaller and smaller.

Later we did the same thing with a smaller piece of styrofoam from a pack of steaks, and he asked us to take a video. So we did and then we watched it on the computer.

Then we watched older videos of him, one from when he’d just turned three and we bought a mess of crawdads at the Farmer’s Market. Enzo watched his chubby younger self peering into a pot of crawdads on the counter and asking, “Bye me?” [Bite me?]

“Back then I didn’t even understand nature.” His tone was disapproving.

But what I’m trying to get to is that in the video, Enzo and I are having this whole conversation, and the me of today can hardly understand a word he’s saying. I can figure it out from my replies, but his words, no.

Is it possible that the look and sound and feel of today’s Enzo will someday be that strange to me?

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